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In Dow Jones news, the markets rallied thanks to a strong round of corporate earnings as well as a willingness by investors to take a wait-and-see approach to political uncertainty.
Here are the numbers from Friday for the Dow, S&P 500, and Nasdaq:
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Now here's a closer look at today's most important market events and stocks, plus Monday's economic calendar.
The Five Top Stock Market Stories for Friday
- Crude oil prices were pushing higher Friday despite news that the number of rigs in the United States increased. Baker Hughes Inc. (NYSE: BHI) said that U.S. producers added eight rigs last week. While the rise in potential production remains at the center of trader views, the markets remain more focused on OPEC's meeting on May 25. The global oil cartel and several key non-members are expected to extend a deal to cap excessive production around the globe. WTI crude oil price today added 2%, and Brent crude gained 2.1%.
- Gold prices had their best week in more than a month as ongoing geopolitical concerns fuel a rise in purchases. The safe-haven metal has rallied as traders continue to speculate on a pending investigation into the firing of former FBI Director James Comey by President Donald Trump. Money Morning Resource Specialist Peter Krauth argues that gold's week-long rally is just the beginning of something special. Here's where Krauth believes gold prices are heading next.
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- One of the biggest stories generating headlines is a massive infrastructure project being spearheaded by Chinese leadership. This massive project will span across three continents – Asia, Africa, and Europe – and traverse both land and sea. It's called the new Silk Road, and investors have a massive opportunity to tap into the largest infrastructure project since the Marshall Plan.Here's more on China's $1 trillion initiative.
- Markets are gearing up for the Spotify IPO, and we've just found a major way for investors to make money on this deal. Click here to find out more.
- Finally, shares of Valeant Pharmaceuticals International Inc. (NYSE: VRX) are up roughly 50% over the last month. But despite this uptick, investors need to remain cautious. This rally isn't going to last. Here's what you need to know right now about Valeant stock.
Four Stocks to Watch Friday: FL, DE, CPB, GPS
- In earnings news, shares of Foot Locker Inc. (NYSE: FL) plummeted more than 16% after the company fell short of Wall Street earnings expectations. The company blamed a delay in IRS tax refunds for its poor performance. Due to a rule that postpones payments of tax credits, both retail and restaurant companies have said that customers didn't have enough money to spend on their products and services. The firm reported earnings per share (EPS) of $1.36 on top of $2.0 billion in revenue. Wall Street analysts projected EPS of $1.38 on top of $2.02 billion in revenue.
- Shares of Deere & Co. (NYSE: DE) gained more than 7% after the heavy machine manufacturer reported quarterly earnings and hiked its yearly outlook. Rising demand for construction equipment and upbeat confidence over the U.S. economy helped fuel a 14% increase in net sales. Deere forecasts that sales in its core products will increase by 13% this year.
- Shares of Campbell Soup Co. (NYSE: CPB) dipped 2% after the company fell short of Wall Street earnings expectations. The firm reported a 3% decline in quarterly earnings as it continues to struggle establishing a new identity. The company has been working to transform its image from a canned-food company into a producer of fresh foods and refrigerated products.
- Shares of Gap Inc. (NYSE: GPS) fell more than 3% despite news that the retailer topped Wall Street earnings expectations. Gap beat EPS and revenue expectations thanks to strong sales at its Old Navy locations.
- The other top stocks to watch today include Dynegy Inc. (NYSE: DYN) and Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. (NYSE: BABA). Here's why these stocks were generating headlines.
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Monday's U.S. Economic Calendar (all times EDT)
- Chicago Fed National Activity Index at 8:30 a.m.
- Four-Week Bill Announcement at 11 a.m.
- Three-Month Bill Auction at 11:30 a.m.
- Six-Month Bill Auction at 11:30 a.m.
About the Author
Garrett Baldwin is a globally recognized research economist, financial writer, and consultant with degrees from Northwestern, Johns Hopkins, Purdue, and Indiana University. He is a seasoned financial and political risk analyst, with a focus on stocks, hedge funds, private equity, blockchain, and housing policy. He has conducted risk assessment projects for clients in 27 countries, and consulted on policy and financial operations for some of the nation's largest financial institutions, including a $1.5 trillion credit fund, a $43 billion credit and auto loan giant, as well as two of the largest Wall Street banks by assets under management.
Garrett joined Money Map Press as an economist and researcher in 2011, specializing in alternative strategies with an emphasis on fundamental and technical analysis.